The stepmother of 11-year-old Gannon Stauch, a Colorado boy last seen on Jan. 27, has been arrested on suspicion of first-degree murder. Letecia “Tecia” Stauch was reportedly arrested in Myrtle Beach, South Carolina.
The suspect is pictured below:
El Paso County, Colorado authorities announced that they would be holding a press conference at 12 p.m. MST on a “major development” in the case of the missing boy.
Investigators said during that press conference that Letecia Stauch is charged with murder in the first-degree of a child under 12 years of age by a person in a position of trust; child abuse resulting in death; tampering with a deceased human body; and tampering with physical evidence.
The defendant remains in South Carolina pending extradition back to Colorado Springs. Authorities say that they have not found Gannon, but they don’t believe he is alive. They are working on evidence that is helping them narrow down their search, they said.
9News’s report indicated that this break in the case appears to have been in the works for some time:
Letecia Stauch told investigators she last saw Gannon at his home in Lorson Ranch between 3:15 p.m. and 4 p.m. on Monday, Jan. 27. She told the El Paso County Sheriff’s Office (EPCSO) Gannon said he was going to a friend’s house. No one has seen him since.
However, on that same day, a neighbor captured surveillance video, which appears to show Gannon getting into a truck. The neighbor told KRDO, our sister station in Colorado Springs, the truck belongs to Letecia Stauch. Investigators with EPCSO haven’t commented on the video except to say it’s part of their investigation.
When Gannon first went missing he was considered a runaway, but that has changed. Authorities have said that the boy relied on medication and that they considered him to be at risk.
Editor’s note: details revealed during the press conference about the criminal charges have been added post-publication.
Alberto Luperon contributed to this report.
[Image via El Paso County Sheriff]
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